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Saturday, June 22, 2019

The curriculum of the future | Column - Barbados Today

Nathaniel Boyce, Educator reports, I remembered as a boy watching Beyond 2000 and other scientific programs about robots, artificial intelligence and automation. 

Photo: Barbados Today
I can say that those notions exist today rather than just in science fiction movies. We know that the needs of our workforce are forever changing and becoming more demanding. It is no secret that the future of work is changing due to technology and automation. We, here in Barbados, are not acting fast enough to update our system of education.

Eventually, automation will lead to the redefining of most occupations and their prerequisite skills. 
Are we doing enough to prepare future generations to thrive in this changing landscape throughout the world? Students that begin primary school today will graduate from university after 2030 and their careers will last through 2060 or beyond. While we cannot predict exactly what our workforce’s needs will be in the middle of the century, we already know that here, even in Barbados, they are changing and will continue to change with the rate of technological advancement in developed countries.

Teachers today are still teaching the exact same subject matter that I was taught over 28 years ago – subjects such as Reading, Mathematics, General Science, Health Science and Social Studies, with the exception of Information Technology, which is not adequately taught at most of our primary schools. I have yet to see the syllabus for this subject...

Our schools should teach the curriculum of the future, not just the curriculum of the past. We need to join the ranks of those developed countries and embrace technology as part of our national curriculum here in Barbados. We have to stop playing this catch-up game and follow countries like the UK, Sweden, US and more to expand the number of contact hours students have to computer access.

Source: Barbados Today